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Government Funding - Ontario

Ontario has an integrated federal and provincial student financial aid program (Ontario Student Assistance Program or OSAP), where federal and provincial loans and many non-repayable grants are accessed through a single application for Ontario residents. Financial assistance is available during the course of your education. OSAP helps students to attend a post-secondary institution by providing them with financial assistance to assist with the costs of going to school. The amount of aid is different for each student and is based on the individual’s assessed financial need. It is important to note, however, that OSAP funding is meant to supplement your resources and the resources of your family (if applicable), not replace them.

The following is an overview of the general federal and provincial financial assistance available in Ontario, as well as specific Ontario aid available to students with disabilities. All students who complete an OSAP application for full-time or part-time studies are automatically assessed for their eligibility for Canada Student Grants, with the exception of the Canada Student Grant for Services and Equipment for Persons with Permanent Disabilities (which requires a separate application). For more information about the Canada Student Grant Program, please visit canlearn.ca.
I.        Financial Aid for Full Time Students
Canada-Ontario Integrated Student Loan (COISL)
As a full time Ontario student, you are eligible for up to $210 per week in federal loans and up to $150 per week (for single students with no dependents) or up to $350 per week (for married or sole support students) in Ontario loans. One of the benefits of COISL is that it does not charge interest until you have left school. Interest accumulates from the month after you graduate or stop studying full-time, but you are not required to make payments until six months later. In addition, Ontario pays the interest on the Ontario portion of your loans in the first six months after you graduate or stop studying full-time.
To be eligible for COISL, you must:
·         Meet OSAP’s residency requirements; 
·         Be enrolled in a degree, diploma or certificate program that runs for at least 12 weeks at a designated institution; and
·         Be taking at least 60% of a full course load or 40% of a full course load if you are a student with a disability. 
How to apply: Use the OSAP application for full-time students.
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period. 
Ontario Access Grant (OAG)
The Government of Ontario offers the OAG to first and second year students from low or middle-income families. The OAG will cover between 25% and 50% of your tuition, to a maximum of $3,000. The maximum percentage of your tuition covered depends on your parents’ income and financial need.
To be eligible for the OAG, you must:
·         Be enrolled in the first or second year of a postsecondary program;
·         Have been out of high school for less than four years as of the 1st day of your current period of study;
·         Be enrolled in a program that is an undergraduate, first-entry program (second entry programs like Law or Medicine, or graduate programs are not eligible);
·         Be enrolled in a program that is two or more years in length, and at an institution approved for the purposes of OSAP; and
·         Your parents’ net income (from Line 236 of the Income Tax form) was at or below the income ceilings set out below. 
How to apply: Use the OSAP application for full-time students.
Deadline: Submit your OSAP application 60 days before the end of your study period. 
30% Off Ontario Tuition Grant
The purpose of the 30% Off Ontario Tuition grant is to ensure that postsecondary education is accessible and affordable for Ontario’s undergraduate students by helping eligible students pay for their tuition. The maximum amount of grant in 2013-14 is $865 per term if you are in a degree program at a public college or university in Ontario. You can receive an annual maximum of $1,730. The maximum amount of grant in 2013-14 is $395 per term if you are in a certificate or diploma program at a public college in Ontario. You can receive an annual maximum of $790.
To be eligible for the 30% Off Ontario Tuition grant, you must:
·         Be a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident or a protected person;
·         Be an Ontario resident;
·         Have been out of high-school for less than four years or six years if you have a permanent disability;
·         Have parental gross income of $160,000 or less;
·         Be a full-time undergraduate student at a public university or college in Ontario;
·         Be in a program that you can apply to directly from high school; and
·         Not restricted from receiving an Ontario Student Loan (e.g., you're not in default or have an academic restriction).
How to apply: Use the OSAP application for full-time students or the standalone application for the 30% Off Ontario Tuition grant.
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period. 
Ontario Student Opportunity Grant (OSOG)
The OSOG is available to help students reduce their COISL debt. The OSOG reduces student’s repayable debt to $7,300 over a two-term academic year and $10,500 over a three-term academic year.
To be eligible for OSOG, you must:
·         Have received a COISL for the academic year;  
·         Have completed a full-time program for two or more terms over a twelve month period;
·         Have all the income on your application verified through filed income tax returns with the Canada Revenue Agency.
How to apply: Use the OSAP application for full-time students.
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period. 
II.      Financial Aid for Part-Time Students
Part-Time Canada Student Loan (CSL – PT)
As a part-time Ontario student, you are eligible for up to $10,000 under the CSL - PT. Similar to COISL, interest does not accrue on the CSL – PT while the student is studying, and part-time students are not required to make principal payments until they graduate or stop going to school.
To be eligible for a CSL – PT, you must:
·         Be taking 20 to 59 percent of a full course load;
·         Be enrolled in a course of study at the postsecondary level (degree, diploma or certificate program);
·         Meet the criteria for your total family income; and  
·         Meet the residency requirements for this program.
How to apply: Use the OSAP application for part-time students.
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period (or no later than six weeks prior to the end of your study period if your study period is less than 21 weeks long). 
Ontario Part-Time Grant (OPTG)
The OPTG provides $500 of grant aid per year to eligible part-time low-income students to help them with their costs of education.
To be eligible for the OTG, you must:
·         Be taking 20 to 59 percent of a full course load;
·         Not be in receipt of the PTCSL or be in receipt of less than $500 in PTCSL for the current academic year.
How to apply: Use the OSAP application for part-time students.
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period (or no later than six weeks prior to the end of your study period if your study period is less than 21 weeks long). 
III.    Financial Aid for Students with Disabilities
Bursary for Students with Disabilities (BSWD)
This bursary provides up to $2,000 per academic year for students with permanent or temporary disabilities who require education-related services or equipment, such as tutors, note-takers, interpreters, braillers or technical aids, that are directly related to their disability.
To be eligible for the BSWD, you must:
·         Have applied and are eligible for OSAP for Full-Time Students and have at least $1 in calculated Ontario need; or
·         Have applied and are eligible for OSAP for Part-Time Students and are receiving an Ontario Part-Time Grant; or
·         Have applied and are eligible for an Institution-Funded Special Bursary.
AND,
·         Have a permanent or temporary disability; and
·         Have disability-related educational costs (e.g. note-takers, vision/learning aids) that result from your disability and are not covered by another agency.
How to apply: Use the Application for Bursary for Students with Disabilities and Canada Student Grant for Services and Equipment for Persons with Permanent Disabilities (CSG-PDSE), available on the Forms section of the OSAP website.  The CSG-PDSE provides up to $8,000 of federal assistance for disability-related educational services and equipment for students with permanent disabilities.  You will be considered for both programs through a single application. For more information on the CSG-PDSE visit http://www.canlearn.ca/">www.canlearn.ca.
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period. 
Ontario Out of Country Bursary for Deaf Students
The bursary assists deaf, deafened, and hard-of-hearing students with the cost of attending a postsecondary school outside of Canada where the only or primary language of instruction for their program is American Sign Language (ASL) or Langues de Signes Québécoises (Quebec Sign Language). The value of the bursary varies depending on the student's eligible costs considered.
To be eligible for the Ontario Out of Country Bursary for Deaf Students, you must:
·         Have completed an OSAP for Full-Time Studies;
·         Be an Ontario resident as defined on the OSAP Application for Full-Time Students;
·         Be attending an OSAP-eligible school located outside of Canada;
·         Be deaf, deafened or hard-of-hearing; and
·         The only or primary language of instruction for the program you are enrolled in is American Sign Language (ASL) or Langues de Signes Québécoises (Quebec Sign Language).
How to apply: Complete the 2013-2014 Ontario Out-of Country Bursary for Deaf Students Application (paper application format only).
Deadline: Submit your application 60 days before the end of your study period. 
Severe Permanent Disability Benefit
The Province of Ontario may forgive your Ontario Student Loan if you have a severe permanent disability that prevents you from participating in the labour force or postsecondary studies.
To be eligible for a Severe Permanent Disability Benefit, you must:
·         Have a severe permanent disability; and
·         Reside in Canada.
Note: A severe permanent disability is a disability that prevents an individual from performing the daily activities necessary to participate in studies at a postsecondary school level and in the labour force; and the disability is expected to remain with the person for the duration of their life.
How to apply: Contact the National Student Loans Service Centre and ask to have your call forwarded to the Canada Student Loans Program. The Canada Student Loans Program administers the Severe Permanent Disability Benefit on Ontario’s behalf as well as their own federal loan forgiveness program, the Canada Permanent Disability Benefit. You may apply for both forgiveness programs using a single application.
Repayment Assistance Plan for Borrowers with a Permanent Disability (RAP - PD)  
Borrowers with a permanent disability may apply for repayment assistance. Through RAP – PD, borrowers with permanent disabilities are helped to pay off their loans in 10 years.
For borrowers with permanent disabilities, the calculation of the affordable payment is based on family income, family size, and disability-related expenses (allowable uninsured medical expenses, special care and other expenses directly related to the disability).
How to apply: Complete an online RAP application. On the RAP application, you must indicate that you have a permanent disability. If you were confirmed to have a permanent disability for the purposes of an OSAP application while you were a postsecondary student, no further documentation should be required. If your permanent disability was not confirmed for the purposes of an OSAP application while you were in postsecondary studies, you will be required to complete a RAP-PD Verification of Permanent Disability form. In addition, you will be required to provide medical documentation to support your permanent disability. To request a RAP-PD Verification of Permanent Disability form, contact the NSLSC.
 
IV.    For Further Information
For additional information on OSAP’s aid programs, visit: https://osap.gov.on.ca/OSAPPortal/en/A-ZListofAid/index.htm
For additional information:
Student Financial Assistance Branch
Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP)
PO Box 4500
189 Red River Road, 4th Floor
Thunder Bay, ON P7B 6G9
 
Telephone: (807) 343-7260
Toll-free in North America: 1-877-OSAP-411 (1-877-672-7411)
Telephone Device for the Deaf (TDD): 1-800-465-3958
 
Fax: (807) 343-7278